Posts so close together? Maybe I’m back on top! I hope so. There have been several topics burning within me the last month or two and I look forward to seeing them written in completion.
This most recent conversation between Heavenly Father and me is freshest on my mind, considering it was just last night. It’s sort of an ongoing conversation also, as we were interrupted and daily life took over, so I really hope He adds to it as I share here.
I was watching an show on TV in which a woman said, “My brother has never left me.” The character described (fictional) childhood hardships in which her brother was always by her side – protecting, soothing, raising.
Watching this show, it occurred to me. My brother left me.
I have an older brother, by two years. He took his own life 24 years ago at the tender age of 23. When he left this earth, he took a part of me with him – the sister part. I walked around for at least 10 years feeling as if half of me had been torn off and I was lost without it.
My brother was the first boy I ever loved. He was the first boy (I knew had tangibly) tried to protect me. He was also my tormentor and the shadow I walked through.
His name is Larry Heath Berzett. Today is his birthday and he would have been 47 years old. My son is named in his memory and they share the same smile.
When a child dies, even an adult child, the parents are always thought of and consoled. Even the siblings think of and try to console the parents. Spouses and children are also reached out to and prayed for. Support groups are available, ministers are at the ready, and every consideration is taken for these survivors. Websites and social media pages, blogs and webinars, all are advertised and shared in hopes of providing a bit of relief for a grieving loved one. I’m so thankful all these avenues are available! Any help for any survivor is necessary and much needed!
Sometimes, a sibling feels overlooked.
My parents were so grieved I could not bring myself to seek consolation with them. They had just lost a son; their first born, the legacy. I was an adult and I had been married for 3 years. And, at only 21 years old myself, my friends nor my husband knew how to console me as we were all mere babes in the wood.
I have not written anything like this, ever. I didn’t want to drag up old pains and devastations for my family. But today, the conversations I’ve had with God take precedence.
Father has shown me, in dreams and in visions, that my brother is in Heaven; a place called Paradise. I have visited him there and we have hugged and laughed and cried and we have played and wrestled. He’ll be there when I get there.
Yesterday, when I had the thought, “My brother left me,” I felt the need to reach out to someone and share my feelings of disappointment and sadness. I couldn’t think of a soul on earth who would be available and who would understand. So I told God –
“My brother left me.”
“He didn’t want to leave you.”
“Then he would have stayed.”
“He loved you.”
“He left me.”
“He loved you longer than any other girl he ever knew.”
“He chose to die and leave me here.”
“Oh, you think he had a choice? You still think suicide is a choice? Look back at 15 years you tried to and wanted to commit suicide. You never did; you couldn’t. You had a choice.”
“Oh Lord! Forgive me!”
“Forgive You? For what? You’re God. You did nothing wrong.”
“You feel I did. Deep inside you feel I abandoned your brother. You’ve said time and again how I saved your life, how you had a purpose and I wouldn’t let you be killed or silenced. Your testimony is how I’ve healed the secret parts – the abuse, the resulting insanity. You want to know where I was when your brother took his life.”
“Yes…yes, Lord. Where were You!? I didn’t take myself out all those times I wanted to. Didn’t You stop me? Didn’t You give me hope or something?”
“I was with him.”
“If You were with him, why did he die?”
“You still had a choice and you chose to live. He had no choice left. Remember the pain? Remember the torment? Remember the darkness? Remember the demons? Now multiply every thing. In your brother’s free will, he had no choice. What you withstood, what you overcame, he could not. He did not leave you; he was forcibly taken by Darkness.”
“I Love You. He is with Me. You will see him again soon.”
Pardon me while I take a deep breath…
This blog needed to be written because 1) There were things I needed to say. 2) People needed to hear that conversation. 3) Some people needed to know suicide will not send a loved one to hell.
I have heard it said that suicide is a coward’s way out. A church I attended once sent out an email for prayers for a bereaved family of a suicide victim. The email spoke of selfishness and self-centeredness. In fact, this is far from the truth! It is only a pain so great which could drive a person to leave everyone they love.
Dying in sin” is not speaking of suicide. “Dying in sin” speaks of dying without ever having accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. My brother had done this. Many Believers in Christ have committed suicide. I know of 2 others besides my brother. This is not a condemnation to hell.
There are many who have believed in Christ and still struggle. Some never make it past ‘believing’. For some, addictions and predilections continue. For a few, darkness, pain, and demons are too overwhelming and they cannot make it out but resort to taking their own lives.
His Son died for them and they accepted His Life as their own, even if they can not live it.
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. (John 1) NASB
Jeannie Berzett Wilbourn